One of my favorite stories in the bible (1 Kings 18) is when Elijah a prophet heard the sound of rain, but there wasn’t a cloud in the sky. He was confronted with the future reality of the end of the famine, but there was no physical evidence of God even starting to build the storm from the heavens. He even told king Ahab it was about to happen. This is tough stuff because often when we hear the voice of God, we usually can’t see evidence of the outcome. Here are four stages of the fulfillment of a promise from God.
Which Stage Are You In?
- Hear it – If you haven’t heard from God lately, chances are you aren’t listening. If you need clarity on a message ask for it. It will come. God delights in talking to and spending time with his children so open your heart and your ears and you will be surprised by what he will say.
“And Elijah said to Ahab, “Go up, eat and drink, for there is a sound of the rushing of rain.” 1 Kings 18:41
- Pray it – Don’t skip this step. If it is worth working through it is worth praying for. If you have a plan on paper pray the plan then enlist a team to pray with you. Don’t skip this step! Didn’t I say this already? The prayer part of the vision is how visions are refined and our hearts are aligned with God’s intentions.
“And Elijah went up to the top of Mount Carmel. And he bowed himself down on the earth and put his face between his knees.” 1 Kings 18:42
- Check it – Sometimes you have to check it over and over again. This is a great stage to be in because you can look for clues that God is working. But the main reason for the waiting is preparation. Never make waiting time wasted time.
“Go up now, look toward the sea.” And he went up and looked and said, “There is nothing.” And he said, “Go again,” seven times.” 1 Kings 18:43
- See it – This is when all the hard work pays off, the planning and praying yield progress and God comes through. All God given visions will come to pass in his time. Remember your timing isn’t usually his timing. Finally, remember what God has already done. Just because God hasn’t made something happen remember all he has already made happen.
“And in a little while the heavens grew black with clouds and wind, and there was a great rain.” 1 Kings 18:45
Hear it, pray it, check it, see it. Looking forward to seeing you at Sharon School in Robbinsville for Sunday services at 9:30 and 11 am!
Josh Conn has been pastoring for over 20 years, father of six, founding executive coach at activate coaching and the founding pastor of 217church, a contemporary church in Mercer County NJ. 217church meets Sundays at 9:30am & 11:00am at Sharon Elementary school in Robbinsville, NJ. Visit www.217church.com for more information, or watch a weekend message here.